Donald Trump has accepted an invitation to meet the North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un, South Korea’s security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, has told reporters.
On Thursday (8 March), a South Korean delegation had briefed White House officials on their talks with the rogue state which were the most significant between the neighbours in more than a decade.
South Korean officials spoke to Trump and delivered a letter from Kim Jong Un to Trump inviting him to meet.
From outside the West Wing and flanked by a South Korean delegation, Chung told reporters that Kim had “expressed eagerness to meet President Trump as soon as possible.
“I told President Trump that in our meeting, North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un said he is committed to denuclearisation.
“Kim pledged that North Korea would refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests. He understands that the routine joint military exercises between the Republic of Korea and the United States must continue and he expressed his eagerness to meet President Trump as soon as possible.
“President Trump appreciated the briefing and said he would meet Kim Jong Un by May to achieve permanent denuclearisation…Along with President Trump, we are optimistic about continuing a diplomatic process to test the possibilities over his full resolutions”.
Although there has been no further statement from the White House, earlier an administration official said: “All options are on the table and our posture toward the regime will not change until we see credible moves toward denuclearisation.”
Trump has said in the past that the US would rain “fire and fury” on North Korea, after it carried out provocative missile tests, although he has said he would consider direct talks with Kim.
National Security Adviser Lt. General H.R. McMaster will brief the UN Security Council next week about recent talks between Pyongyang and Seoul.